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Trader Joe's Yea/Nay Thread - 3rd quarter 2011 [Old]

Rewinding the clock for July-September.

I really like the Caribbean Fruit Floes popsicles and the chocolate-covered banana slices, though I realize I can easily make the latter myself and will henceforth do so.

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  1. I've been obsessed with the Hold the Cone Mini Ice Cream Cones! Nice vanilla flavor, and I love the chocolate at the base of the cone. I also liked the 70% chocolate bars (one with black sea salt & caramel and one with toffee and pecans) but both have sold out quite quickly.

    10 Replies
    1. re: betterbeheaven

      My TJ's still has the toffee pecan bars, but the caramel sea salt bars are long gone.

      1. re: Ruth Lafler

        The caramel sea salt bars are back in stock! Yay!

        1. re: Ruth Lafler

          I love these. Last time I went they had both (I was travelling and so in Eugene OR). These are likely made by Vosges, and their same black sea salt bar sells most places for $6. A bargain at TJs.

          1. re: jsaimd

            To me, the TJ sea salt bars are sweeter than the Vosges ones, but at one third of a price.

            1. re: jsaimd

              Yes, the black sea salt bar is VERY similar to Vosges. I'm guessing, though, that it's a knock-off rather than made by Vosges under the TJ's label, mostly because Vosges doesn't make a bar similar to the toffee bar.

        2. re: betterbeheaven

          Yes! They were sampling the mini cones at my local TJ on Saturday. I think I had 4 of them they were great! Liked the vanilla better than the chocolate. Is that their normal ice cream inside?

          1. re: betterbeheaven

            I agree, I love those mini cones. Unfortunately I eat too many at a time. i hope they keep them and maybe add strawberry to the collection.

            1. re: betterbeheaven

              I bought both the chocolate bars to try recently. I liked the small little bits of toffee, pecans, and walnuts well-distributed through that bar, offering bits of crunch and flavor, and the pops of sea salt in the chocolate. I thought the caramel had good flavor in the black sea salt, not overly sugary and matched well with the bittersweet chocolate; unfortunately, the salt wasn't well distributed on the bottom, so some parts were bare of it and others had clumps that were too salty.

              1. re: betterbeheaven

                wow, just bought a box of mini cones and finished it with my GF the same night. addictive and dangerous, buyer beware!

                1. re: betterbeheaven

                  I must dissent on the mini cones. I thought they were a bit soggy and that the chocolate coating had a strange flavor, as did the chocolate ice cream. The vanilla was a bit better. (Of course, I did have to try both of them, strictly for research purposes!) Overall, I would actually prefer a mini-Drumstick cone.

                  I agree wholeheartedly about those chocolate bars. They are both dangerously good.

                2. Im addicted to T.J's already cooked bacon - red box cold section next to the cooked chicken sausages. THE best smoky bacon ever. Also discovered their frozen tart yogurt - next to the ice cream. No dairy for me but, I found that I can tolerate this. And, it's delish w.some of TJ's defrosted frozen berry medley. Sometimes I also add a sprinking of walnuts and gluten/dairy free chocolate chips :0

                  1. two new spice grinders. one has smokey sea salt-verrrrry smokey, but i like that. the other has brown and white rock sugar, chocolate (might be cocoa nibs? cant recall) and coffee beans. can't wait to try this on a caramel chocolate tart! might be on cherries or fresh berries, too!

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: chez cherie

                      Oooh. Was the latter in the baking aisle, or on the spice rack? Definitely, definitely need both in my life.

                      1. re: chocolatstiletto

                        i saw it on the "what's new" shelf, but i think i also saw it on the spice aisle. i plan to poach some cherries in zinfandel, and serve them over vanilla ice cream with a generous grind of that goodness. cherries, chocolate and coffee sound great to me.

                        1. re: chez cherie

                          cherie, that sounds quite appetizing!

                        2. re: chocolatstiletto

                          Ours was in the baking aisle and new shelf.

                        3. re: chez cherie

                          OMG! I want that sugar grinder!! I already love the pink salt and pepper one... I can keep it at work and folks can use it without me getting all stuffy about the price!

                          --Dommy!

                          1. re: Dommy

                            It does add a certain flair to the morning coffee!

                          2. re: chez cherie

                            I think the best use for the sugar/chocolate/coffee grinder will be to trim pastry or cake or candy the flavors would complement. It's mostly sugar, but would be attractive ground over cupcakes or on top of truffles, and give a pop of texture and a bit of flavor. Anything soft or liquid, it kind of gets lost in, I think.

                            1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                              I just HAD to buy it... and love it! The best use I've tried it is on Mexican rice pudding (which isn't quite as sweet and a bit watery). The sugar was there, but there was certainly pops from the coffee and chocolate. I am trying to think of how to use it for my work breakfast next week!

                              --Dommy!

                          3. I love the almond windmill cookies. My husband thought they were a bit plain but ate a bunch of them and now loves them. There is just something about them that is addicting. I, also, really like the Hold the Cone Mini cones but only in vanilla (perfect for little kids). I was not a big fan of the chocolate. We tried the three layer popsicles- raspberry, strawberry and lemonade- they were ok but a bit much. Nobody could finish one. We have never tried their rack of lamb. Any reviews on that?

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: kmw1101

                              I've tried TJ's rack of lamb and vacuum-sealed pot roast recently. The lamb was okay, required some silverskin trimming. I cooked it on the grill and it came out nicely. To be honest though, I think it wasn't as meaty as the lamb I get at a good supermarket. Plus it was more expensive.

                              I reheated the post roast in some TJ's organic beef broth and thickened it to make a gravy. It wasn't bad at all. Quick comfort food.

                              1. re: kmw1101

                                I adore the almond windmill cookies. I like the mini cones, but they can't beat the ice cream bon bons.

                              2. I don't usually follow TJ topics so don't know if this has been mentioned in the past, but I love the mini brie bites and the fresh goat cheese medallions.

                                I like that they are single serving and good versions. They are a nicel and tasty 70 calorie snack.